ZUTTY ROCKS THE LIBRARY

Chris Tyle is not only a fine bandleader, cornetist, clarinetist, drummer, and singer, but he finds fascinating things — doors that open into beautiful palaces of information.  His latest find came to me in an email; when I clicked on this link, marvels emerged:

That’s Arthur Singleton (Zutty to all of us) photographed by George Fletcher, playing his drums at Vasquez Rocks.

Here are Dr. Edmond Souchon, Ray Bauduc, Johnny Wiggs at a New Orleans Jazz Club jam session at the Saint Charles Hotel:

All of this — audio as well as video — is held by the New Orleans Jazz Club Collection of the Louisiana State Museum — and can be accessed (pleasure for the eyes, the ears, and many other organs) for free online.  And the materials are free for non-commercial use as long as you provide a link to the specific LOUISiana Digital Library page and credit the Museum: “Courtesy of the New Orleans Jazz Club Collection of the Louisiana State Museum” credit line.

So I think it would be possible for me (with some intricacies) to have a coffee mug made that would shine this picture in my bleary eyes every morning:

And, I am looking forward to hearing a radio broadcast featuring Vince Giordano’s “New Orleans Nighthawks,” including Jimmy Maxwell, Bernie Privin, Bobby Pring, Artie Baker, Clarence Hutchenrider, Moe Dale, Dick Wellstood, Mike Peters, Eddy Davis, and others, playing GLAD RAG DOLL:

http://louisdl.louislibraries.org/cdm4/item_viewer.php?CISOROOT=/JAZ&CISOPTR=3125&CISOBOX=1&REC=2

But there’s more!  The collection doesn’t simply exist online, in some imagined hot jazz cloud.

The Louisiana State Museum will be opening an exhibit on November 4, 2011, celebrating the 50th anniversary of Preservation Hall and an exhibit of the highlights of their instrument collection at the New Orleans Mint.  The exhibit will also be a preview for the Museum’s new performance venue and recording studio.  Music will be provided by the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the Rebirth Brass Band, and Roots of Music.  For ticket information, please call 504.558.0493.  The event will take place at the Old U.S. Mint, 400 Esplanade Avenue, New Orleans — which is now part of the LSM.  And there will be special rates for out of town visitors at the Omni Royal Orleans and the Hampton Inn Hotels & Suites of New Orleans for the Novemeber 4th gala event.

So between now and November 4, some JAZZ LIVES readers might be able to tear themselves away from their computers and iPhones and make it down to the Crescent City for this event, I hope.

The Library’s homepage is http://louisdl.louislibraries.org/index.php.

But approach with due caution — I spent a whole afternoon happily browsing amidst photographs I’d never seen, audio interviews new to me, and jazz I’d never known existed.  Make coffee and bring provisions for the voyage!  And for the devotees of Strunk and White out there, my alternative title for this post is ZUTTY, ROCKS, THE LIBRARY.  Pick the one you prefer!

2 responses to “ZUTTY ROCKS THE LIBRARY

  1. Terrific stuff, especially of Zutty. I’ll post some pics when I can of Singleton, taken by Charles Peterson in Zutty’s Harlem Apartment, February 1942. Peterson, Pops, and Singleton, the trio on an armchair, living large, in good spirits because of spirits and ganja, another pic the three eating gumbo, Armstrong, roach pinched between his fingers, all smiles. The pics published in “Swing Era New York” The Jazz Photographs of Charles Peterson, W. Royal Stokes, Photographic preparation by Don Peterson, Charles’ son, Foreword by Stanley Dance, Temple University Press, Philadelphia. Recognition of Charles Peterson’s photographic contributions to the history of Classic and Swing is long overdue. Not to mention his personality, his contributions as a musician, his career as a freelance photographer for Time, Saturday Evening Post, Collier’s, and then his work for down beat, Metronome, and Stage. He was intimate with all the early greats, from Pops to Mezz Mezzrow and Jack Teagarden, to name just a few. A Renaissance man, he was also a deep sea sailor and celestial navigator. He worked as an ad copy writer, a real estate salesman, and an installer of fire escapes and other wrought iron fixtures. During WWII he built a 16 acre farm in eastern Pennsylvania and became a professional blacksmith, machinist, and general mechanic.

  2. If you want to praise Charles Peterson, you have to get in line — he’s one of my heroes, and his generous son Don has made it possible for me to post pictures that CP took — unseen until now — on this blog. He was one of those rare artists who manage to capture the scene all at once: you can hear the music in a Peterson photograph. Glad you share my enthusiasm, or vice versa!

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